Wanted to publish this earlier but didn`t have the time so here a few Bali thoughts from my flight back:
Well here I am on my flight back from “The island of the gods” and lots of thoughts running trough my mind. After dropping into Idul Fitri at Jakarta with no cabs and almost nothing working at the airport I made it to my Emirates flight. 16 more hours and I will be back in Slovenia.
Bali is a interesting place. All of you who have already been there once will know. The mix of multiculti, hindu mysticism and the most important of all surfing will make you lose any sense of time and space. In short it is timeless. Endless waves. Endless sunsets.
The Hindu natives are, despite all that is being done to them still friendly and kindhearted. The waves still keep on coming set by set. It`s kind of a blessing and a course. They make you forget all these problems around. While becoming more in tune with the nature around you, one also start to notice the incredible toll that the development has taken on the island.
The water is getting more polluted. The weather patterns are changing. Summer season is blurring into winter. It`s becoming more and more obvious that we are the ones responsible for all this and there is no bullshit made up statistic that is gonna prove otherwise. I`we seen it in the mountains over the last winters and in the waters of the summers.
The question now is how we can help. Small things can amount to big change. As for Indonesia that means that the ones who are there, can still get organised in things like the clean padang padang project to clean the Pukit peninsula. But even that might not be enough as this photo from an article in indosurflife can attest.
Don`t get me wrong, Bali was great again… and might always be, but it has changed a lot, and not all of it for the better. There is less corrupt police… thou kingpins and officials still run the show from the background. There are more expatriates and even more people looking for “eat-pray-love” on the island. Migrants trying to make a living come in heaps from Java and Sumatra. Population is up 400.000 since I last visited.
I have to leave now thou, but not without a sense of urgency and worry.. time might be running out. How long will the island be able to absorb this before falling to pieces ? Will the ICONS of Bali stand strong so I can surf them again ?
But then again as my expatriate friends like to say: Don`t look at Bali like that… it will become what it will. Not much one can do but hang on the roller-coaster. At least the north part of the island and everything above the “eat, pray, love” crazed theme park once known as Ubud is still pretty much as I remember. Danau Batur remains mostly untouched for now. And the waves… I already miss the waves, the island, the people… one thing thou is for sure… I will be back. Hopefully soon.
Winter is returning soon and until then ! Take care, enjoy the waves, the wind and the sun and do not take them for granted !